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India goalkeeper Subrata Paul will be conferred the Arjuna Award

Subrata Paul during a training session at Germany's RB Leipzig in 2012. (Photo Copyright: CPD Football)

Indian national team and North East United FC goalkeeper Subrata Paul will be conferred on with the Arjuna Award by the Ministry of Youth Affairs and Sports. The announcement was made by the Ministry on Monday (August 22).

The 29 year old Sodepur born goalkeeper nicknamed “Spiderman” will become the first footballer to receive the Arjuna Award since India star striker Sunil Chhetri in 2011. He will be the first goalkeeper to win the award since Brahmanand Sankhwalkar received it in 1997.

Subrata is one of 15 Indian sportsmen and sportswomen who will receive coveted award, which is given away by the Indian Sports Ministry for outstanding performance in Sports and Games.

Cricketer Ajinkya Rahane, archer Rajat Chauhan, athlete Lalita Babar, cueist Sourav Kothari, boxer Shiva Thapa, hockey players V.R. Raghunath and Rani Rampal, shooters Gurpreet Singh, Apurvi Chandela, paddler Somyajit Ghosh, wrestlers Vinesh Phohat and Amit Kumar, Para-athletes Sandeep Singh Maan and Virender Singh are the other sports stars who have been announced as award winners by the Ministry of Youth Affairs and Sports. The Arjuna Award constitutes a cash prize of Rs.5 lakh, besides a bronze statuette of Arjuna and a citation.

Rio 2016 Olympics medallists shuttler P.V. Sindhu and wrestler Sakshi Malik will receive the prestigious Rajiv Gandhi Khel Ratna Award along with gymnast Dipa Karmakar and shooter Jitu Rai. Dipa Karmakar’s coach Bisheshwar Nandi, star Cricketer Virat Kohli’s coach Raj Kumar Sharma, athletics coach Nagapuri Ramesh and boxing coach Sagar Mal Dhayal will receive the Dronacharya Award, while the Dronacharya Awards for Lifetime Achievement will be awarded to swimming coach S. Pradeep Kumar and wrestling coach Mahabir Singh. Athlete Satti Geetha, hockey player Sylvanus Dung Dung and rower Rajendra Pralhad Shelke will be conferred the Dhayan Chand Award.

Shri Pranab Mukherjee, President of India, will present the awards at Rashtrapati Bhavan on National Sports Day on August 29 to the respective winners. The winners were selected by a twelve member selection committee appointed by the Indian Sports Ministry.

My heartiest congratulations to Subrata on winning the Arjuna Award! It has been a long journey since we met for the very first time in 2002 and you fully deserve this award for your extraordinary merits in Indian football. I’m really proud of you bro!

(Photo Copyright: CPD Football)